Another al-Qaida group issues threats

(CNN) - Familiar terrorist groups, familiar threats, familiar boasts and grievances, all included in new messages tied, either directly or indirectly, to al-Qaida.

But what does it all mean?

This time it's a video of fighters from al-Qaida's dangerous Somali affiliate, al-Shabaab. Their faces hidden, calling for new recruits and more attacks.

Recently posted on the Internet, it's clearly a propaganda and recruiting video. This time the threat, "we will blow you up until we finish you off."

A chilling reminder of the deadly assault on Nairobi's Westgate Mall that killed 67 people. These men say, "it's not that Westgate was enough, there are still hundreds of men who are wishing for such an operation."

"We certainly can't dismiss their ability to carry out those kinds of terrorist attacks," said Peter Bergen, a CNN national security analyst.

Al-Shabaab is in the U.S. crosshairs. In January, a drone strike failed to kill Ahmed Abdi Godane the leader. Last October, Navy Seals under heavy gunfire had to abandon an assault on a compound in southern Somalia when civilians got in the way. The Navy Seals had been sent to get a man known as Ikrimah, a senior planner for al-Shabaab.

Ikrimah attracted U.S. attention because he was working with Nasir al-Wuhayshi. He is number two in al-Qaida and leads its dangerous Yemen wing.

U.S. officials say it's believed a daring open gathering was shot in the remote mountains of southern Yemen, an al-Qaida stronghold.

Wuhayshi coordinates al-Qaida's far-flung affiliates, plotting to attack western targets overseas or even in the U.S.

The connection between al-Qaida groups in Somalia and Yemen was partially disrupted when a middleman was picked up the by U.S.

There is a Somali by the name of Warsame who was picked up in the Gulf of Aden traveling from Yemen to Somalia, and he was sort of the linchpin between these two groups.

"He was very familiar with the leadership of al-Qaida in Yemen. He spoke at length to U.S. interrogators," Bergen said.

U.S. officials say Wuhayshi's group has gone on an internal rampage, brutally killing several people they believe are informants for the U.S.

The biggest worry right now is al-Qaida in Yemen has gone quiet.

Perhaps too quiet. After finding out details about U.S. surveillance of its communications last year through a series of news leaks, the group has moved away from too much reliance on cell phones and encrypted chatrooms.

Turning back to old style couriers, making it much harder for the U.S. to track their moves.

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